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The Significance of Guardian Animals at the New Parliament Building Entrances

The Significance of Guardian Animals at the New Parliament Building Entrances

New Delhi: Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar with Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla during the flag hoisting ceremony at new Parliament building, in New Delhi, Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023. (PTI Photo)

As the new Parliament building prepares to hold its first session, Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar raised the national flag at the Gaja Dwar, one of its six entrances. These entrances are adorned with guardian animals, each symbolizing different qualities and aspects of Indian culture. Let’s explore the significance of these guardian animals at all six gates.

Gaja Dwar – The Elephant (North Entrance)

The Gaja, or elephant, stands guard at the north gate. This majestic animal symbolizes wisdom, wealth, intellect, memory, and the aspirations of elected representatives of democracy. In Vastu Shastra, the northern direction is associated with planet Mercury, which represents higher intellect. The Lord of the northern direction is Kubera, the god of wealth.

Asva – The Horse (South Entrance)

At the southern entrance, the vigilant and ready horse, known as Asva, signifies endurance, strength, power, and speed. It also reflects the quality of governance and leadership.

Garuda – The Eagle (East Entrance)

The eagle-like Garuda stands at the eastern ceremonial entrance, representing the aspirations of the people and the country’s administrators. In Vastu Shastra, the eastern direction is linked to the rising sun, symbolizing hope, the glory of victory, and success.

Makara – The Mythological Aquatic Creature (West Entrance)

The Makara is a mythological aquatic creature with the combined bodily parts of various animals. It represents unity in diversity among the people of the country.

Shardula – The Mythological Creature (North-West Entrance)

Shardula is another mythological creature and is believed to be the most powerful among all living beings. It symbolizes the strength and power of the people of the country.

Hamsa – The Swan (North-East Entrance)

The Hamsa, or swan, graces the public entrance to the northeast. It represents the power of discernment and self-realization born of wisdom. This quality is essential for the people in a democracy.

Ceremonial Entrances

Out of these six entrances, three are designed as ceremonial entrances. They are named Gyan, Shakti, and Karma, symbolizing the Indian knowledge system, patriotism, and artistic traditions, respectively. These ceremonial entrances showcase Indian art, culture, ethos, and patriotism, welcoming special guests and marking special events at the new Parliament building.

The use of these guardian animals and ceremonial entrances not only adds aesthetic beauty to the building but also carries deep cultural and symbolic significance, reflecting the diverse and rich heritage of India.

Source: The Indian Express

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